2010 predictions - Frank Meehan, CEO, INQ

2010 predictions - Frank Meehan, CEO, INQ
The mobile industry is undoubtedly in the middle of one of its major landmark moments of change that happens every 10 years.

There is a redefining of the 'mobile phone', a reordering of the dominant players as big companies fade and new players emerge, as well as a rebalancing of the relations between manufacturers, operators and retailers. Nokia did it to Motorola 10 years ago, and we've seen RIM and Apple do it to Nokia more recently.

It is driven by new companies cutting through existing perceptions, bringing an altogether new proposition and shaking up the market.

Apple and BlackBerry have risen to the point now where they are the only two handset brands that trendsetters around the world's major creative, media and business hubs will consider for their choice of phone.

Nokia and Samsung have completely fallen out of the aspirational market and are trying desperately to claw back in. For them to make a significant leap in their products, it will require a massive overhaul in mentality, culture, platforms and operations. They are still selling more handsets than Apple and BlackBerry, but it's largely basic handsets with low margins.

Apple and RIM have their own challenges. RIM is in a vulnerable state, with the looming threat of Apple producing an exceptional email solution to challenge the BlackBerry.
Apple could be a victim of its own success. The cachet of the iPhone is diminishing as it becomes ubiquitous, reaching places like Tesco. There could be a backlash, with consumers falling into several camps: too expensive; poor messaging device; principled anti-Apple; or simply being contrarian.

Aspirational consumers are looking for something fresh outside Apple and BlackBerry, in terms of brand, design and experience, to break out of the uniformity.

This agenda is also being encouraged by operators, which are keen to stunt Apple and push rival brands.

The market will be open to innovation, change and disruption in 2010. Obviously, we see a big opportunity for INQ next year with that backdrop.
Written by Mobile Today
Mobile Today


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